This is an attempted scientific study of illuminated individuals. Bucke provides three dozen very consistent examples of 'cosmic consciousness.' Some of these are the usual suspects, and others are contemporary case-histories which Bucke collected. Bucke proposed that these enlightened figures are evolutionary jumps, the precedecessor of a more advanced species.
November 4, 2011
A timeless classic
The medical doctor, Richard M. Bucke, wrote this book in the year 1900. It has circulated among a small group of mystics and religious seekers ever since. In brief, Dr. Bucke proposes that all the religious leaders of all religions throughout all history began their missions with a common subjective experience that he calls 'Cosmic Consciousness.' He uses ancient texts by these religious leaders to clarify his position, and this occupies most of his book. Many readers say this is a brilliant book. Alan Watts, for example, was an advocate of this book. Dr. Bucke also believes many poets were blessed with this same Cosmic Consciousness, including Walt Whitman, who was a personal friend of Dr. Bucke.